Looking through the lens of photographer and Around DB competition winner Navin Khianey.
It isn’t hard to find satisfaction in viewing great photographs of Lantau Island, particularly for residents. One can’t help but beam with pride when you happen to live by the shores of Pui O and Cheung Sha, or the cozy suburbs of Discovery Bay and Tung Chung, against the mighty backdrop of the island’s mountainous hiking trails. It beholds scenery far removed from what many typically associate with Hong Kong, which is perhaps why many locals have grown quite protective of it, the entirety of which is a shutterbug’s playground.
While choosing the winner of Around DB’s monthly Instagram competition for April, we stumbed upon the works of Navin Khianey, a freelance photographer based in Dubai. Having lived in Hong Kong for nearly a decade in the 1980s, he regularly shuttles between the two cities, and considers the South China megalopolis a second home.
The fairly extensive amount of photographs Navin had shot in Discovery Bay and all across Lantau caught our interest. While he couldn’t be in town to claim his gift certificate for complimentary refreshments, we decided to chat him up, if only to get him to share more breathtaking samples from his portfolio. He was happy to oblige.
“I picked up my first DSLR in 2009 after winning an international photo competition, based on a photo I took with a simple point & shoot camera. Photography quickly became an insatiable passion and my camera an extension of me.
“My first break as a freelancer came in 2011 when I shot a rock concert for a promoter I bumped into. His regular photographer called in sick at the last minute and I happened to be around at the time. Music is a passion as well and I started to shoot concerts more frequently, also because I enjoyed being there. Soon I got to know the bands and artists personally and was shooting their promotional material and press kits. Every musician and artist has a story they want to tell, and the idea of telling it through a series of photographs was a creative challenge I enjoyed. Every client is unique and every personality different. I strive to capture that uniqueness.
“Today, professionally I do my fair share of food, commercial and lifestyle photography. I am blessed to have clients such as JEEP, Tea Junction Cafe, The National Newspaper in Abu Dhabi, The Tourism Authority of Thailand, etc.
“However, when I need to de-stress or just be alone with myself, my passion for landscapes, cityscapes and street photography takes over. This is when the city of Hong Kong and specifically Lantau Island become my canvas. From modern skyscrapers to rural lush landscapes; from beaches to mountain tops — Lantau offers an abundance of opportunity for photographers to flex their creative muscle. Discovery Bay and Lantau Island in general is very different from the world’s perception of what Hong Kong has to offer travelers and tourists. I have been working on a rather personal project to try and capture the spirit and beauty of Lantau Island and put it together in a unique collection eventually.”
You can view more of Navin’s work at www.navinkhianey.com.